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  • First time applying for a vehicle

    We're a small volunteer department in New Jersey looking to apply this year for an apparatus grant. This will be our first year doing so. Our town is small, roughly a square mile, with a population of around 3500-4000 and we run roughly 250 calls a year. Our first out piece is a 1995 KME and our 2nd out is a 1981 Mack. We also have a 1983 GMC Mini Pumper/Brush truck as well as a 2004 Ford F250 Super Duty Utility and a 2010 Chevy Tahoe command vehicle.

    Due to recent cutbacks and caps on budgets at the state level, our town simply cannot afford to replace our apparatus. The F250 and the Tahoe were both bought using funds from our yearly operating budget. We pay 8800 at the beginning of every year until the note is paid off. This is manageable for smaller vehicles but with the cost of an engine we simply cannot afford it. Our 2nd out is 30 years old this year, open cab, with no seatbelts in any of the seats. It is also a stick shift.

    Based on this rough information, what are our chances of getting a grant for a new engine to replace our old mack?

  • #2
    Originally posted by LT8npfd View Post
    We're a small volunteer department in New Jersey looking to apply this year for an apparatus grant. This will be our first year doing so. Our town is small, roughly a square mile, with a population of around 3500-4000 and we run roughly 250 calls a year. Our first out piece is a 1995 KME and our 2nd out is a 1981 Mack. We also have a 1983 GMC Mini Pumper/Brush truck as well as a 2004 Ford F250 Super Duty Utility and a 2010 Chevy Tahoe command vehicle.

    Due to recent cutbacks and caps on budgets at the state level, our town simply cannot afford to replace our apparatus. The F250 and the Tahoe were both bought using funds from our yearly operating budget. We pay 8800 at the beginning of every year until the note is paid off. This is manageable for smaller vehicles but with the cost of an engine we simply cannot afford it. Our 2nd out is 30 years old this year, open cab, with no seatbelts in any of the seats. It is also a stick shift.

    Based on this rough information, what are our chances of getting a grant for a new engine to replace our old mack?
    You have an ave. pumper age of 23 years and a fleet age of 16. If you get past the computer the issue will be with the PR seeing that you have a 2010 command vehicle and a 2004 utility. Regardless of your inability to fund a pumper through the budget they will question the command vehicle purchase. Why wouldn't those funds be set aside to help defray the cost down the road? Why is that vehicle so much more important than replacing the 30 year old pumper?

    Any vehicle request at this point is a crap shoot. Competition is high and funds are limited. Chances are slim for any one applying, but you have no chance if you don't. What have you got to lose with trying; they could approve it.

    Comment


    • #3
      Exactly what Bugle said.
      Why does a small volunteer department with 1 Sq mile of territory and 250 calls / year need a command vehicle to start with. Then the fact that you have committed your surplus from your operating budget to pay for it is another red flag in the computer scoring matrix.
      that funding should be earmarked for engine replacement.

      Can't win if you don't try, but don't get your expectations too high for success.
      You should raise your percentage of funding to 20% instead of the normal 5% to increase your odds.

      Getting by the computer scoring is the hardest part. As those numbers aren't subject to anything but the facts of call volume, fleet age, budget numbers, coverage area in first due, Population served..

      The amount of funding for apparatus has been cut down and it will be extremely competitive to even get past the computer to peer review, so it will take ALL the right numbers and needs to be a winner.

      Not trying to discourage you from trying , just the facts of where the program is.

      If they took some of the welfare handouts back from SAFER and put it back into apparatus ,it would serve a much better function.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by LT8npfd View Post
        We're a small volunteer department in New Jersey looking to apply this year for an apparatus grant. This will be our first year doing so. Our town is small, roughly a square mile, with a population of around 3500-4000 and we run roughly 250 calls a year. Our first out piece is a 1995 KME and our 2nd out is a 1981 Mack. We also have a 1983 GMC Mini Pumper/Brush truck as well as a 2004 Ford F250 Super Duty Utility and a 2010 Chevy Tahoe command vehicle.
        I am in a similar boat, my friend! My numbers are similar to yours, 10 square miles, population around the same, $70,000.00 annual budget, lower call volume though (about 40 per year - GREAT fire prevention program - "don't have a fire!") My first due is a 2002 Central States conventional cab, second is a 1976 Pierce (donated from a bigger FD) Medium rescue is a 1990 E-One (purchased used from a different FD because our 70's step van was not roadworthy anymore) and the tanker is a 1977 Salisbury that has needed replacement for over 20 years. I've been trying to get the vehicle AFG for the tanker since before buying the 1990 rescue, computer DJ's every time, but we still keep trying!

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        • #5
          It took us 4 tries to get past the computer scoring for replacing our 25 yo tanker, only to get a final round DJ with the letter that said if any leftover funding becomes available we might get the award.
          In the following year the town appropriated funding for us to get a new one.

          It's very hard to get a vehicle award when faced with low call volume and small population numbers. Makes the cost benefit ratio too high unless you add additional funds to bring your match up.
          If you are asking for a 200k Tanker and put an additional 25k towards the match , then the C/B ratio goes down considerably and it shows you are asking for a helping hand , not a handout.
          Every little bit of advantage helps with both the computer and Peer review scoring.

          Comment


          • #6
            Quick question, how do you increase the match in the application.. Do you say you are doing it in the Narrative? I tried to do the increased match this year and saw no place to do it so I said I was doing it as part of the narrative..

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by islandfire03 View Post
              It's very hard to get a vehicle award when faced with low call volume and small population numbers. Makes the cost benefit ratio too high unless you add additional funds to bring your match up.
              Usually the case, but that's not always hard fact. I have seen very rural departments with < 20 calls funded for vehicles. Lots of factors come into play, but generally you're correct.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by islandfire03 View Post
                It's very hard to get a vehicle award when faced with low call volume and small population numbers. Makes the cost benefit ratio too high unless you add additional funds to bring your match up.
                If you are asking for a 200k Tanker and put an additional 25k towards the match , then the C/B ratio goes down considerably and it shows you are asking for a helping hand , not a handout.
                Not sure I totally agree with that - I have low volume, low population, and have two vehicles awarded.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by LVFD301 View Post
                  Not sure I totally agree with that - I have low volume, low population, and have two vehicles awarded.
                  Not saying it can't be done Blake: Just not everyone has a station with no heat, a dirt floor, no operating budget and good luck.
                  The odds are just very low unless you have next to nothing.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    To answer Techboy, when you go to the budget page the contribution is pre-populated with the minimum but you can edit that in the text box and put whatever you want over that amount and it will update the federal share.
                    Brian P. Vickers
                    CEO - Vickers Consulting Services, Inc
                    FH.com/Firehouse Mag Contributor
                    www.helpmewithgrants.com
                    www.facebook.com/vcsinc

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by islandfire03 View Post
                      Not saying it can't be done Blake: Just not everyone has a station with no heat, a dirt floor, no operating budget and good luck.
                      The odds are just very low unless you have next to nothing.

                      Hey, we got concrete floors now!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Wow ::: Movin on up :-}
                        Glad to hear that all your hardwork is paying off.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by BC79er View Post
                          To answer Techboy, when you go to the budget page the contribution is pre-populated with the minimum but you can edit that in the text box and put whatever you want over that amount and it will update the federal share.
                          Thanks.. Makes sense now..

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Hey Guys you don’t think that one square mile is a mistake do you? Lots of runs and a lot of equipment just for that small of an area. Well unless he is counting mutual aid calls. Not making fun are anything, it is just that by the time the old QB gets to going good you would be out of your JD. I don’t know just hard to believe but what do I know?
                            You all have a great day.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by dfd701 View Post
                              Hey Guys you don’t think that one square mile is a mistake do you? Lots of runs and a lot of equipment just for that small of an area. Well unless he is counting mutual aid calls. Not making fun are anything, it is just that by the time the old QB gets to going good you would be out of your JD. I don’t know just hard to believe but what do I know?
                              You all have a great day.
                              No : there are lots of congested areas of the rustbelt that have a small first due in area with heavy population and old buildings.

                              Comment

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